Print Edition - 2015-07-03 | MONEY
Traders demand reopening of Rasuwa-Kyirong road
Jul 2, 2015-
Traders have urged the government to reopen the Rasuwagadhi-Kyirong road connecting the northern border with China. The 22-km route has remained closed for the past two months due to landslides triggered by the April 25 earthquake. The traders have also said that the government should compensate them for the damage caused by the tremors to their merchandise worth millions.
Meanwhile, Commerce Minister Sunil Bahadur Thapa informed the parliamentary Commerce, Industry and Consumer Welfare Committee on Thursday that China had started reconstruction of the damaged infrastructure on their side of the border. “As soon as the work is completed, China will release the goods stranded there.”
Recently, a team led by lawmakers Janardan Dhakal and Chhowang Tenjen Tamang and consisting of members of the Trans-Himalayan Cross Border Commerce Association and Nepal China-Kyirong Trade Association submitted separate memorandums to Minister Thapa and Foreign Minister Mahendra Bahadur Pandey urging them to launch a diplomatic initiative to reopen the border as soon as possible.
The frontier should be reopened soon and traders should be compensated as well, the lawmakers said. According to the association, the earthquake destroyed goods worth Rs75 million.
The customs and immigration offices on the Nepal-China border have reopened. However, vehicular movement on the highway has not resumed.
Traders said that although the Ramchhe-Rasuwagadhi road section is currently in operation, Chinese officials have not allowed motor traffic by reopening Rasuwa Port due to fear of landslides.
Man Bahadur Tamang, chairman of the Nepal China-Kyirong Trade Association, said that the government should expedite the process
of reopening the trade route through diplomatic channels. “The road can be reopened in two days if the government initiates diplomatic talks.’
Minister Pandey assured the delegation that they were holding talks to reopen the border. “We have initiated talks with the Chinese foreign minister and Chinese ambassador to Nepal.”
Meanwhile, Minister Thapa said that he had taken the initiative to get the northern border reopened. Arjun Gautam, president of the Trans-Himalayan Cross Border Commerce Association, said that the Rasuwagadhi-Kyirong road was relatively safer than the Tatopani road and that the government should expedite the process of reopening it.
Published: 03-07-2015 08:26